By the time Taylor Swift closed down the festivities at midnight with the last of three songs, Alibaba (BABA) had recorded sales of $38.4 billion for the Singles’ Day e-commerce shopping monster. This year’s total beat out last year’s record $30.8 billion in sales on the e-commerce platform, a 26% increase, If you want to pick nits with the new record, you might note that this year’s 26% growth rate was down from last year’s 27% rate.
But analysts who were watching for any sign that the U.S.-China trade war might have damped consumer enthusiasm in China certainly didn’t find it in these numbers.
Alibaba competitors shared in the bonanza. JD.com (JD), for example, saw sales of $29.17 billion for the day. At a 26.8% year over year growth rate, JD.com even slightly surpassed Alibaba’s growth speed this year.
This year also continued the spread of Singles Day shopping frenzy outside China. Since Alibaba began offering Singles’ Day deals in 2009, the events has spread to Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, and Vietnam through Alibaba’s subsidiary Lazada. This year brands such a Nike and Brooks Brothers offered Singles’ Day discounts on their U.S. websites.
Alibaba reported 40% year over year quarterly revenue growth earlier this month. JD.com will report financial results for the third quarter on Friday, November 15.
Today, with remarks from President Donald Trump throwing doubt on the schedule for any U.S.-China trade deal (and the possibility of any tariff relief) U.S. stocks went just about nowhere. The Standard & Poor’s 500 finished the session up 0.6% and the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed flat on the day. The NASDAQ Composite was higher by 0.21% and the Russell 2000 small cap index was ahead by all of 0.02%.